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Who wants my '88 4x4 XJ? Am I really going to let her go??

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Who wants my '88 4x4 XJ? Am I really going to let her go??

Old 09-03-2018, 04:15 PM
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Default Who wants my '88 4x4 XJ? Am I really going to let her go??

Am I really going to let my 1988 4x4 Cherokee go? Really?
Can I find someone that will appreciate it, have the money and/or skills to care for it properly, and still give me some amount of money for it that might soften the blow of the $15K of nickels and dimes I've put into repairs over the years?

When it runs well, I love my XJ.
I'm not a rock-crawler or off-roader, per se, but when I have to kick in the 4x4 to get to the camping spot, worksite, surf spot, rec area - or to get through the snow, mud, sand or loose dirt on my way to work or play - I LOVE the 4x4. If I had the money to get a little rougher off road with it, I'm sure I'd enjoy that, too. If I ever felt like it was totally reliable, I woulda had her on way more adventurous excursions (mountains, Baja, deserts, etc)
PLUS, I love the older classic boxy look of the 1988 XJ :-)

When I'm on the side of the highway waiting for it to cool down so I can install yet another extra $70 coolant bottle (or bottle cap) that I carry with me at all times for just in case, I'm not loving the XJ :-/

My problem is that I know just enough to try to tackle many XJ problems myself over the years, but I'm not skilled or focused enough to get repairs done fast - and I don't exactly enjoy doing repairs/mods/improvements. This is a recipe for a very frustrating way to live with an aging vehicle that was made with inherent problems (Bad wiring, bad coolant/radiator system - Renix, you know).
Sure, I do enjoy when I fix something myself, figure it out, and it's done - but since I'm often doing it under the stress of life that I don't manage very well, and it takes me like 10 times as long to do it as someone that's enthused and/or skilled with it - with constant visits with questions to YouTube or an auto parts store - then it's not optimal.

Then there's all the repairs I've paid to have done, either because they were above my head or tool set, or I just didn't have the time or patience then to do it myself. We're talking like $15K over the 16 years I've had the XJ. And it still has issues (Dying power locks/windows, interior, exterior, dead a.c., oil leak, Renix issues)

If someone savvy and enthused about XJ repairs/restores were near me (San Diego, CA), I might ask to get her fixed up to RELIABLY functional, and then, in time, money allowing, I'd handle cosmetics and modernizations. If I suddenly had a lot of money, I'd chop the top and get a pop-up on it for camping - maybe chop and extend the back so my 6'3" body could finally lay out flat in the back to sleep!
But, alas, I don't have much money right now to put into even just the necessities - so, I wonder if anyone would be interested in helping, in exchange for some video work done in trade for their labor time (I'm a photographer/videographer) - perhaps of the work being done.

The reason I tell all this is to let you know where I'm coming from before I do the dreaded CraigsList posting (and get, what, $500 max for it?), or else just call some charity or scrapyard (and get, what, $100 for it?).

Anybody want this that will actually do something good with it? Or fix it up to use it for some noble or charitable cause? Or know a charity that could use it (not for scrap metal or parts, but for the potential that it has)?
I'm in San Diego, CA. I have ALL maintenance records and receipts since I bought it in 2002. It performs fine in recent years, passed smog test every time (although due for new smog and registration right about now).

OR - anyone around here that knows the idiosyncrasies of 1988 XJs, and want to hold my hand through a restoration of its basic necessities, and let me assist and/or film the process (I'd actually love to learn through assisting or filming)?

By the way, sorry if this is the wrong section for me to post this. Please let me know if I should put it somewhere else on CherokeeForum.com.

Well, I hope I've gotten my point across okay.
I'll hate to lose this vehicle that has provided me so much access to fun and worksites, but I just can't handle any more repair time on my own and/or a lot more $$$.
If I can't find someone that could step up and say, "I know how to get an '88 XJ running reliably and I won't charge you an arm and a leg, let's do it!!", then I hope I can find a buyer who will be able to use it for it's intended potential.

BY THE WAY - I'm also open to partnering with someone that wants to fix it up, then we sell it and split up that money (just another idea, in case that interests anyone out there).

Thanks for reading; I look forward to whoever replies!

Last edited by ted939; 09-03-2018 at 04:42 PM. Reason: Added an idea
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Old 09-04-2018, 05:12 AM
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Sounds like you need a cheap Civic. When I had a cheap Civic AND a Cherokee, the Cherokee got so much attention. The best investment you can make for your XJ is, well, a cheap Civic.
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Old 09-04-2018, 11:04 PM
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I had a Honda Accord (a nice one) that I replaced with my 22 year old XJ as a daily driver (my wife thought I had lost my mind!). My Jeep work was much less stressful with that Honda sitting as a back-up in the driveway. I kept it that way for about 2 years, but once I had the Jeep where I wanted it, and had built up my diagnostic chops a lot more, I let the Honda go (not using the car enough was starting to take a toll on it). Now the fixes have to be done under duress and time constraints. I agree, having a cheap 2nd car can really be helpful if the stress of getting the Jeep back where you want it is getting to you.

Generally though, a 25+ year old Jeep is not a good vehicle choice if you don't enjoy working on it and getting ahead of its various issues (and that includes the "must fix right now" jobs).
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Old 09-04-2018, 11:39 PM
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needs lots of TLC I understand my neighbors are always asking me if i get tired of working on it on a weekly basis i said no i love it
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Old 09-05-2018, 10:39 PM
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Originally Posted by ted939 View Post
Am I really going to let my 1988 4x4 Cherokee go? Really?
Can I find someone that will appreciate it, have the money and/or skills to care for it properly, and still give me some amount of money for it that might soften the blow of the $15K of nickels and dimes I've put into repairs over the years?

When it runs well, I love my XJ.
I'm not a rock-crawler or off-roader, per se, but when I have to kick in the 4x4 to get to the camping spot, worksite, surf spot, rec area - or to get through the snow, mud, sand or loose dirt on my way to work or play - I LOVE the 4x4. If I had the money to get a little rougher off road with it, I'm sure I'd enjoy that, too. If I ever felt like it was totally reliable, I woulda had her on way more adventurous excursions (mountains, Baja, deserts, etc)
PLUS, I love the older classic boxy look of the 1988 XJ :-)

When I'm on the side of the highway waiting for it to cool down so I can install yet another extra $70 coolant bottle (or bottle cap) that I carry with me at all times for just in case, I'm not loving the XJ :-/

My problem is that I know just enough to try to tackle many XJ problems myself over the years, but I'm not skilled or focused enough to get repairs done fast - and I don't exactly enjoy doing repairs/mods/improvements. This is a recipe for a very frustrating way to live with an aging vehicle that was made with inherent problems (Bad wiring, bad coolant/radiator system - Renix, you know).
Sure, I do enjoy when I fix something myself, figure it out, and it's done - but since I'm often doing it under the stress of life that I don't manage very well, and it takes me like 10 times as long to do it as someone that's enthused and/or skilled with it - with constant visits with questions to YouTube or an auto parts store - then it's not optimal.

Then there's all the repairs I've paid to have done, either because they were above my head or tool set, or I just didn't have the time or patience then to do it myself. We're talking like $15K over the 16 years I've had the XJ. And it still has issues (Dying power locks/windows, interior, exterior, dead a.c., oil leak, Renix issues)

If someone savvy and enthused about XJ repairs/restores were near me (San Diego, CA), I might ask to get her fixed up to RELIABLY functional, and then, in time, money allowing, I'd handle cosmetics and modernizations. If I suddenly had a lot of money, I'd chop the top and get a pop-up on it for camping - maybe chop and extend the back so my 6'3" body could finally lay out flat in the back to sleep!
But, alas, I don't have much money right now to put into even just the necessities - so, I wonder if anyone would be interested in helping, in exchange for some video work done in trade for their labor time (I'm a photographer/videographer) - perhaps of the work being done.

The reason I tell all this is to let you know where I'm coming from before I do the dreaded CraigsList posting (and get, what, $500 max for it?), or else just call some charity or scrapyard (and get, what, $100 for it?).

Anybody want this that will actually do something good with it? Or fix it up to use it for some noble or charitable cause? Or know a charity that could use it (not for scrap metal or parts, but for the potential that it has)?
I'm in San Diego, CA. I have ALL maintenance records and receipts since I bought it in 2002. It performs fine in recent years, passed smog test every time (although due for new smog and registration right about now).

OR - anyone around here that knows the idiosyncrasies of 1988 XJs, and want to hold my hand through a restoration of its basic necessities, and let me assist and/or film the process (I'd actually love to learn through assisting or filming)?

By the way, sorry if this is the wrong section for me to post this. Please let me know if I should put it somewhere else on CherokeeForum.com.

Well, I hope I've gotten my point across okay.
I'll hate to lose this vehicle that has provided me so much access to fun and worksites, but I just can't handle any more repair time on my own and/or a lot more $$$.
If I can't find someone that could step up and say, "I know how to get an '88 XJ running reliably and I won't charge you an arm and a leg, let's do it!!", then I hope I can find a buyer who will be able to use it for it's intended potential.

BY THE WAY - I'm also open to partnering with someone that wants to fix it up, then we sell it and split up that money (just another idea, in case that interests anyone out there).

Thanks for reading; I look forward to whoever replies!

Don't buy $70 coolant bottles. convert to an open system. New radiator to do so is about $120.
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Old 09-07-2018, 07:38 PM
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Originally Posted by ted939 View Post
My problem is that ....I'm not skilled or focused enough to get repairs done fast -

and I don't exactly enjoy doing repairs/mods/improvements.

it takes me like 10 times as long to do it as someone that's enthused and/or skilled with it -

Then there's all the repairs I've paid to have done, because they were above my head or tool set,
Bravo for an honest post.
We are like clueless XJ twins from another mother!

I also have learned that these are very hard cars to work on (hardest of all the cars I've owned in my life)
I also have learned you need major tools to work on them.

I have given up on trying to work on this car, and it's the best decision I ever made.
I easily maintain all my other German cars, but will not touch the XJ anymore.

The key in your post was that you don't enjoy working on cars.
Don't own an old car.

You can not daily drive a 30 year old car unless you have serious money or serious DIY skills.
Your XJ is a hobby car. Get a 2nd car. Or pay someone to maintain it.
Or, get rid of it and drive a Honda, as others have said.
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Old 09-09-2018, 07:36 PM
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If you cant figure out what to do with it, I can take it off your hands for you. Just a little bit north of you and can pick it up on a trailer (or drive it?). I wouldn't mind diving into a Renix era jeep for once.
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Old 09-29-2018, 08:29 AM
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My 90 XJ is a hobby vehicle. I have a 05 Honda Civic as my daily driver. I tear cars down to the frame rails and rebuild them for leisure. There was a point in time my XJ was my daily driver, that was stressful. Constantly hassling with dumb things to have a ride to work. Now it mostly sits and I pull it out to go wheeling. Now the XJ is a blast to own. When I have issues with it, it can sit.

Your 88 is 30 years old. Not many people daily drive antique cars, for good reason. Even the experienced mechanic will catch hell keeping it going daily. If you have the space, keep the XJ and buy another vehicle. If not, let the jeep go and accept you have gotten your money's worth out of it. 16 years is a good run for daily driving a vehicle. Even if you have put $15k into the vehicle, that is only $1k a year. Car payments will add up to more than that if you were to stay in a new vehicle.

The newest XJ is 17 years old. That's a bit old to serve as someone's single vehicle, daily driver. From the sounds of it, you need to upgrade to something newer and more reliable.
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Old 09-29-2018, 09:40 AM
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Default Thanks for the thoughtful reply.

Yes, I do have it for sale now, and down the line, I hope to find a reliable more modern version of the 88 Cherokee? Any idea what that might be? Something of similar size, ruggedness, power and agility?

Iím not a fan of the modern round bubbleyness of many modern Jeeps and vehicles, and I get the feeling that many of these modern Jeeps and other off-roadish vehicles are more for looking like an off-roader than for actually getting off the path to get to that worksite/campsite/surf-spot or for getting through the snow/mud/loose grade/gravel. The 88 Cherokee is GREAT for all that (when running right)!

Any good go-to suggestion for a more recent replacement to the 88 Cherokee?

Thanks!
Ted

Last edited by ted939; 09-29-2018 at 12:39 PM.
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Old 09-29-2018, 12:13 PM
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An 89?
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Old 09-29-2018, 09:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Jimbo Slice View Post
An 89?
NICE!
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